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A/^ A 0£^/-i MEMORIAL MEETING WALTER HINES PAGE WALTER HINES PAGE FROM THE PAINTING BY LAZLO IN THE AMERICAN EMBASSY, LONDON MEMORIAL MEETING WALTER HINES PAGE HELD AT THE BRICK PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH, FIFTH AVENUE AND THIRTY- SEVENTH STREET, NEW YORK, ON APRIL THE TWENTY-FIFTH, I9I9 ORDER OF EXERCISES TEXT OF ADDRESSES DOUBLEDAY, PAGE & COiMPANY GARDEN CITY NEW YORK LONDON 1920 PREFACE The Memorial Meeting was held in the Brick Presbyterian Church in New York, on the afternoon of April 25, 1919, at four o'clock. Dr. Edwin A. Alderman, President of the University of Virginia, presided and introduced the speakers who were the Earl of Reading, Ambassador of Great Britain to the United States, Hon. WiUiam Gibbs McAdoo, Ex-Secretary of the Treasury, and Dr. L3nnan Abbott, Editor of The Outlook. Their addresses, full of dis- cerning appreciation of Mr. Page's character and dehvered with impressive simplicity, were listened to by a great company of Mr. Page's friends. These appreciations, as well as the messages read at the meeting, have been Hi 50 VI PREFACE gathered together in these pages by the committee, and are presented to Am- bassador Page's friends both in England and America as a keepsake to his mem- ory. The form chosen for this httle volimie is itself a memorial, for it has been made identical with the form of "The Rebuilding of Old Common- wealths," the book into which Walter Hines Page poured his soul. He wrote in one of its pages: "I believe in the perpetual regeneration of society, in the immortaHty of democracy, and in growth everlasting." This great and true American, as firm in his simple faith in democracy as was Lincoln, lived to see Germany strike her colors on November ii, 1918, and his friends are glad to believe that as a "Happy Warrior" he went forward, to use his own words, to "growth everlast- ing.'' . ORDER OF EXERCISES PAGE The Prayer 3 By Dr. William Pierson Merrill Address -5 By Dr. Edwin A. Alderman Message 21 From President Wilson Message 22 From Secretary Lansing Address 25 By Lord Reading Address 36 By Hon. William G. McAdoo Address 46 By Dr. Lyman Abbott MEMORIAL MEETING WALTER HINES PAGE THE PRAYER BY DR. WILLIAM PIERSON MERRILL DR. .ALDERMAN introduced the Rev. Dr. William P. Merrill,pas- tor of the Brick Presbyterian Church who offered the following prayer: Let us ask the blessing of God: Oh, God, our father, God of our fathers and God of all humanity, we give Thee thanks for Thy servant who, serving faithfully his country and his race, truly served Thee. We beseech Thee that Thy presence may be with us, meeting here in memory of this. Thy servant, and a servant of this nation. We fervently and humbly pray to Thee that by Thy grace, working in the hearts of men, Thou wilt preserve and strengthen that 4 MEMORIAL MEETING feeKng of concord, of peace and good will which exists between the two countries which this man served, and that Thou wilt grant that throughout all the world there may be extended those principles of righteousness and of justice to which he devoted so much of the strength of his life. Grant Thou, by Thy Spirit, working upon the hearts of the men in whose hands are the great destinies of this coming time, that there may be brought and confirmed, a peace that shall be established upon righteousness and faith and truth, in order that Thy Kingdom may come here in the world, and Thy will be done in the affairs of men. Amen. ADDRESS OF DR. .\LDERMAN PRESIDENT OF THE UNIVERSITY OF VIR- GINIA, AND chair:man of the memorial MEETING THE praise which a free and thoughtful people feel impelled to bestow upon high character and good deeds is one way the race hag of uttering its own eternal aspirations, and constitutes a sort of spiritual food with which men would fain nourish themselves. ''Death hath this also," said Lord Bacon, ''that it openeth the gate to good fame," by which the old wise man meant, I think, that when any man of renown passes by in life, and es- pecially in death, a certain wave of emotion follows along, touching ahke the old who see in him the fulfiller of their 6 MEMORIAL MEETING dreams, the young, the inspirer of their dreams, the girl, that her lover, the mother that her son, may become such as he. Thus it is that a company of friends is here to-day to speak of a man whom they loved, a citizen who had faith in ideas and rare power to see and promote the lines of true progress in his day, and a pubHc servant who served modestly but notably and well the in- terests of his country and of mankind. I could not, even if it were my proper function so to do, speak of Walter Page in the note of old-time memorial statehness. I can imagine him in his bluff, explosive way checking me and bidding me restrain my loquacity and curb my oratorical instincts. But cer- tain intimate things I may, with pro- priety and deep love, briefly utter before presenting to you those who would an- alvze and evaluate his career. WALTER HINES PAGE 7 Walter Page and I were brought up in the same old Southern state of North CaroHna, and essentially in the same era of sacrifice and seriousness which swept over a land smitten by war and revolu- tion and grimly struggling back into the field of national consciousness and modern democracy. The sense of social duty lived in the air he early breathed and caused him to have for his undi- vided country and for the section whose strivings and tragedies he witnessed an attachment almost romantic in its tenderness and brooding concern. I saw him for the first time thirty- nine years ago, and during that long period I have known and loved few men better. As a young student at college, I stumbled into a meeting of teachers at my University and saw standing on a platform a young man expounding to them, in a most unconventional way, 8 MEMORIAL MEETING the dignity and beauty of the discipUnes involved in the study of the Greek language and literature. I was not deeply moved by the Greek appeal, but I was arrested quickly by the young editor who seemed to be flouting the oratorical pomposities current at the time by his manner and dress and who seemed charged with fierce eagerness, defiant optimism, and intellectual con- fidence. I saw him for the last time in October, 1 914, standing in the doorway of the old American Embassy, on Victoria Street, in London, bidding me good-bye and Godspeed on my homeward voyage. The marks of care and toil were upon him, but also of proud, steadfast devo- tion and purpose, for he was just begin- ning the duties of a mission destined to be historical in the annals of American diplomacy and peculiarly distinguished WALTER HINES PAGE 9 in the story of Anglo-American rela- tions. The young attorney for the Greek disciphne, of the late 'seventies, had indeed traveled a long distance be- tween the cotton fields of North Caro- lina and the Court of St. James's. The journey had not been tempestuous but steady and fonvard, as if certain con- stant trade winds of energy and clear- thinking and forceful writing and down- right purpose had driven him on. There was no subtlety or cunning or mystery or seK delusion about Walter Page. He had faith in his profession of pub- licist, and his convictions marched on ahead of him, and he shouted out the thing he was after and the methods he meant to use. He was a big, whole- some, human being. He was not es- pecially logical; in fact, he resented the logician and the formal-minded man. He may be called an impressionist lo MEMORIAL MEETING whose impressions went deep and whose eye discerned the essence of things. There were certain quahties inherent in his character about which one may venture to use that most dangerous form of phrase — the superlative. I have never known a more persistent and in- teUigent radical — ^in the best sense of that incisive word. His eyes never beheld anything, whether a venerable human institution, a manuscript, a piece of social organization, or a me- chanical device, that he did not ask him- self these questions : ^^Can this thing be made better than it is? and who and where is the man to tackle the job? and how soon can I tie the job and the man together? ' ' He was thus upon an unend- ing quest for practical excellence and a furious crusader against vain pretension. His passion was to build or rebuild old commonwealths, rural life, old educa- WALTER HINES PAGE ii tional systems — whatever it was. Until the duties of the world war overshad- owed all things, he always claimed that the most satisfactory and important service of his life was the service he rendered upon the Southern Education Board and the General Education Board. I have never known a more perfect democrat than Walter Page. He wasted no time in defining that great Hope, as he called it. The conception thrilled and exalted and stimulated and guided him as religion used to guide its devotees in the age of Faith. He had thought the thing out and talked it out and or- dered it into a creed. "It^s the end of the year," he wrote me at Christmas in 191 2. " Mrs. Page and I (alone) have been talking of democracy. I do pro- foundly hold the democratic faith and beUeve that it can be worked into action among men." And in the same letter, 12 MEMORIAL ]\IEETING he added: ^^I have a new amusement, a new excitement, a new study, as you have and as we all have who really be- lieve in a democracy — a new study, a new hope, and sometimes a new fear; and its name is Wilson. I have for many years regarded myself as an interested, but always a somewhat de- tached, outsider, believing that the democratic idea was real and safe and lifting, if we could ever get it put into action, contenting myself ever with such patches of it as time and accident and occasion now and then sewed on our gilded or tattered garments. But now it is come — the real thing; at any rate a man whose thought and aim and dream are our thought and aim and dream. That's enormously exciting! I didn't suppose I'd ever become so in- terested in a general proposition or in a governmental hope." As the tragic WALTER HINES PAGE 13 years went by it is needless to say that this interest and hope, whose name was Wilson, grew into confidence and faith and affection. I have known no man of wider and tenderer sympathies, of greater joy in praise of others, and greater genius in discovering the best in others. There are many noble men in America who found themselves because he first found them. Wlien his Memoirs come to be written, I prophesy that the number of the letters that he wrote and the con- tacts that he maintained with all sorts of men wiU astonish his biographer. And such letters! beautiful in hand- writing, fresh in thought, turbulent with strident common sense and radiant hope and virile humor. If he shall be not adjudged the best letter writer of his generation, I shall be much mis- taken. About the time of his appoint- 14 MEMORIAL MEETING ment to the English post, a certain menace of disease condemned me to in- activity in the great, cold, north country of New York. Week by week beautiful letters came to me from him — all in his engraved-like handwriting. They were sent primarily to beguile my sickness and silence, but they fairly throbbed with interest and bold opinions and poetical insights and praise of friends and now and then Gargantuan merriment and laughter. I often read them with min- gled laughter and tears, remembering the motive that moved the busy man, and stirred by their sense and substance. The letters didn't cease until the ship bearing him to his great task v/as ap- proaching Liverpool. Writing in De- cember, 191 2, amidst all sorts of conceit and mounting enthusiasms, I find these noble sentences spoken to strengthen a lonely man's courage. *'IVe a book WALTER HINES PAGE 15 or two more to send you. If they in- terest you, praise the gods. If they bore you, fling 'em in the snow and think no worse of me. You can't tell what a given book may be worth to a given man in an unknown mood. They become such a commodity to me that I thank my stars for a month away from them when I may come at 'em at a dif- ferent angle and really read a few old ones — ^Wordsworth, for instance. When you get old enough, you'll wake up some day with the feeling that the world is much more beautiful than it was when you were young, that a landscape has a clearer meaning, that the sky is more companionable, that outdoor color and motion are more splendidly audacious and beautifully rhythmical than you had ever thought. That's true. The gently snow-clad little pines out my window are more to me than the whole i6 MEMORIAL MEETING Taft Administration. They'll soon be better than the year's dividends. And the few great craftsmen in words, who can confirm this feehng — they are the masters you become grateful for. Then the sordidness of the world lies far be- neath you and your great democracy is truly come — the democracy of na- ture. To be akin to a tree, in this sense, is as good as to be akin to a man. I have a grove of little long-leaf pines down in the old country, and I know they'U have some consciousness of me after all men have forgotten me: I've saved 'em, and they'll sing a century of gratitude if I can keep 'em saved." Intense, dynamic, practical patriotism was incarnated in Walter Page. There was nothing provincial about him in this manifestation, for his mind was a world mind and his interests cosmic interests, though, as I have said, he brooded over WALTER HINES PAGE 17 the region that gave him birth like a mother over her children, trpng always to aid it even if he had thereby to incur unpopularity and outspoken criticism^. His interest in the Negro, for instance, was keen and cathohc, not from any romantic emotionalism, but because he saw the African as the stage where democracy could really hope to play its heroic part, if it were freed from hin- dering obstacles. He saw the weak- nesses of democracy and sought to remedy them, not by turgid eulogy, but by practical efforts to abohsh ignor- ance and disease and to promote com- munity effort and social organization. When the great war came and Page had settled down to a world task, I find a soberer note in forming his letters to me. The old flavor of daring humor and soaring talk dropped out of his style. He saw the supreme test awaiting him, a 1 8 MEMORIAL MEETING test which had faced Frankhn and Jef- ferson and Adams in other days, and which no one of them compassed more nobly than he. He must become the voice of the New World cheering for- ward the Old in its struggle for freedom. And he did so become. He saw, too, his beloved Democracy put to its su- preme test — cross-examined mercilessly by all the forces of society and assailed by a colossal foe. There was no waver- ing or lack of brain or faith, only sober- ness and girding of the loins. He saw afresh and at first hand the greatness and constancy of the English race and beheld anew the oneness of their ideals with our own, and hence the essential unity and permanency of their destiny with the destiny of his country — and so he grew in power as an interpreter be- tween the two kindred democracies struggling for existence at Armageddon. WALTER MINES PAGE 19 I had dreamed of my old friend com- ing home, hearing in his ears the acclaim of his friends and countrymen, and so living to old age accompanied by love and honor and troops of friends. When he actually came home broken in body to die, while the bells of victory were everywhere pealing, my heart was bitter at what seemed the savage cruelty of such a fate. But I now know that my emotion was the natural human reaction to loss and pain, and I now see the grandeur surrounding the end of this tired, faithful servant of the state, who had fought to the finish and won the fight in a crisis of the world, and who must have had acquaintance with the things that are not seen, and must have heard about him the rustling of the pinions of victory and the ''well done" of just men in all lands. And there was infinite beauty and fitness in carrying 20 MEMORIAL MEETING him back to lie under ''the long-leaf pines down in the old country '^ where the sands are white and the air clean. And those who cared for him rejoiced that the great Ambassador rests among his forbears, amid childhood scenes, content, I dare say, on some mount of faith, to know that " His part, in all the pomp that fills The circuit of the summer hills Is, that his grave is green." PRESIDENT WILSON'S MESSAGE DOCTOR ALDERMAN, after his own address, introduced Mr. Herbert S, Houston, Secretary of the Committee, who read the follow- ing messages from the President of the United States, and from Secretary of State Lansing. **It is a matter of sincere regret to me that I cannot be present to add my tribute of friendship and admiration for Walter Page. He crowned a life of active usefulness by rendering his coun- try a service of unusual distinction, and deserves to be held in the affectionate memory of his fellow countrymen. In a time of exceeding difficulty he acquitted himself with discretion, unwavering fidelity and admirable intelligence. ''WooDRow Wilson." 21 SECRETARY LANSING'S MESSAGE THE passing of Walter Hines Page from the world in which he played so conspicuous a part was an event casting a shadow over his country in the very hours when victory for the cause to which he had devoted his energies, his very life, was assured. With a vision, which he converted into effort. Doctor Page from the first perceived the meaning of the war and the peril to those fundamental principles for which the United States has stood throughout its Hfe as a nation. EQs influence was ceaselessly exerted in be- half of the cause of the Allies and it was largely through his sympathetic spirit 22 WALTER HINES PAGE 23 and through the confidence and good will which he inspired that many of the vexatious questions between the United States and Great Britain were removed and the peoples of the two countries were united in common thought and common purposes. The patriotic service which he ren- dered in the critical years and the sacri- ficial impulse with which he gave himself to the work of his ofhce makes his career as an ambassador distinguished and his name memorable among the famous Americans who have represented their country at the Court of St. James's. It is with mingled feelings of sorrow and admiration that I am privileged to bear witness to the greatness of Doctor Page's service, to his loyal devotion to American principles, and to the zeal and earnestness with which he performed his arduous duties. It is in the record 24 MEMORIAL MEETING of such a life that Americans find their loftiest ideals translated into fact and are given inspiration to serve their country to the very end. This is the lesson we should learn from the life of Walter Hines Page, a great diplomat, and a great patriot. Robert Lansing. LORD READING'S ADDRESS IORD reading, the British High Commissioner and Special Am- bassador to the United States, was introduced by Doctor Alderman in the following words : The deepest conviction held by the late Ambassador from the United States to Great Britain was the conviction that the British Empire and the United States of America should know each other and understand each other, and as kindred peoples act together for the promotion of peace and justice in the world. There is, therefore, pecuhar fit- ness and graciousness in the presence here to-day of His Excellency, the Earl of Reading, British Ambassador to the 25 26 MEMORIAL MEETING United States, who on this side of the water has done so much to promote this unity and to reaUze this conviction. I have great honor in presenting to you, the Earl of Reading. Lord Reading's address was as follows : It is indeed a graceful act to have af- forded the opportunity to the British Ambassador to the United States to ex- press the tribute of respect, admiration, and affection that the British people feel for Walter Hines Page. To-day I speak to you as British Am- bassador, by special command of His Majesty, the King; by the request of the Government; and at the earnest desire of the British people. The Gov- ernment and people speak with one voice when they speak of Doctor Page. I noted that Doctor Alderman referred to his last meeting with Doctor Page in WALTER HINES PAGE 27 October, 1914. With us in England, knowledge of Doctor Page may almost be said to have begun when he first came to our country as the accredited repre- sentative of the United States to our Nation. He came as an interpreter of the thoughts and the sentiments of America to Britain. Pie was with us a little over a year before the great war began. During this early period we learned to know more of him perhaps than is usually learned in so short a time. He made himself acquainted, and indeed, had become on friendly terms with all of our leading Statesmen, men of letters, men engaged in Art, Science, and indeed in all professions and one might say, all avocations of life. WTien the war came in 1 914, he was in a difficult and a very responsible position. Those of us who were in my country during that period, will recall the many 28 MEMORIAL MEETING difficult, anxious, contentious questions that arose during the early part of the war. It was not vouchsafed to him to express, in public, his thoughts upon the war which had started. He rep- resented his country and observed throughout that strict neutrality which of course became his duty. He was a true American; never for one moment during the whole period of that neu- trality did he forget that he represented a neutral administration; but, neverthe- less, he did conduct the affairs of his country with our authorities in England so as to smooth away difficulties, to remain on the friendliest terms, and to convince us of sympathy notwithstand- ing that it was his duty to insist and most strenuously to insist upon the point of view of his Government. I doubt very much whether we have ever brought home to you, or whether WALTER HINES PAGE 29 any words that I could use would con- vey to you the deep debt of gratitude that we British people feel for the work of Doctor Page, during that period of the war. It was his counsel, it was his acts, it was generally his thought that helped always to clear away some of the com- plexities that were constantly arising. In private life, he was far too out- spoken a man (candor was part and parcel of him) to conceal from those who had the high privilege of intimate inter- course with him, that the whole soul of the man was centred in the victory of the Allied cause. He never allowed that sympathy to interfere with his duty; but almost the crowning moment of his life, I should think, was when America entered the war — ^when the restraints were removed from him; when he could speak his thoughts; when he could give public utterance to them; when he could 30 MEMORIAL MEETING aid by his public efforts, in the work for the x\Uied cause. During all this time, he had been gain- ing the affections of our people increas- ingly, as time progressed. After Amer- ica had entered the war; when he threw himself so whole-heartedly into our life in England; when with the joy of the removal of the restraint that had cabined and confined him for so long, he was able to lend his energies, his ac- tivities and the value of his judgment to the common work in which we were en- gaged, he vowed to us that he was only a worker in the democracy of the Eng- lish speaking nations. He longed to take his part as a soldier in the field of battle, fighting for right, for justice, for liberty, for that democracy he loved. I could not use language which could properly be described as exaggerated when I speak of the impression that he WALTER HINES PAGE 31 made upon us in England. There will be a golden chapter in the history of England entitled '' Walter Hines Page." There will be another in the history of Anglo-American cooperation for the jus- tice and liberty of the world. He had an unfaltering faith in the victory of our cause. Whatever the difficulties were, he never allowed the light to be obscured. He had a singu- larly original mind. He had a specially outspoken way of expressing himself. His thoughts were lofty; his language was distinguished. His ideals were no- ble and he never was weary of devoting himself to carrying them into practical realization. I will now speak to you, the names of the great men of my country who have been associated with him and who would love to be associated at this mo- ment as I am, speaking I think just for 32 MEMORIAL MEETING one moment only — those with whom he served during the earUer days of the war, when Mr. Asquith was Prime Min- ister and Sir Edward Grey was Foreign Secretary; and of the later days, when Mr. Lloyd George was Prime Minister and Mr. Balfour the Foreign Secretary; of Lord Crew at one time handling the affairs of the Foreign Office; of Lord Curzon who has done the same in later time. I speak of these politicians — men who played a great part during the war, only for the purpose of giving ut- terance for them, through the tribute of admiration and of love for the man. His work throughout the latter period of his life was avowedly given to making these great English speaking peoples better acquainted with each other. I recall as I address you, a speech he made in the House of Commons, if my memory serves me aright, at the end of WALTER HINES PAGE 33 191 7, when he said that he would devote the remaining years of his Hfe to bring- ing about a more fundamental and lasting acquaintance and friendship be- tween our two countries. He has in- deed done noble work in that direction. He labored so hard that he strained his physical capacities to the uttermost, as some of us who had the advantage of seeing him often, realize. He did it, I beheve, knowingly. He refused to spare himself because he was determined that all that there was in him should be given to the cause of the country he represented in such grave and anxious times, and that it should be devoted also to that other nation where he was then residing, so closely associated with America. To all those who were engaged in the common cause, those labors of his have borne fruit, and I believe will bear 34 MEMORIAL MEETING even richer fruit in the future. His memory will ever be recalled with rever- ence; remembered with the Anglo- American relations during the last few eventful years. To all who studied what has happened during the great war, it will ever be kept alive by devotion and loyalty to the great ideals which Walter Hines Page always set to liimself, and of which he was never tired of speak- ing to us in England. He came to us comparatively un- known. He left us, so shortly before his death, with a name renowned and revered by all those who had learned to know him, and that w^as by all the English speaking peoples of the world. He was beloved by all who had the hon- or of intimacy or private intercourse with him — they who had garnered some of the rich harvest of the beautiful thoughts to which he so constantly WALTER HINES PAGE 35 gave utterance, and he will ever remain with us, among the most distinguished of the distinguished representatives you have sent to our country. We of Great Britain, and of that ag- gregation of British nations known as the British Empire, will always love and revere the memory and the works of Walter Hines Page. HON. WILLIAM G. McADOO^S ADDRESS H ON. WILLIAM G. McADOO was introduced in the following words by Doctor Alderman: I am glad that these exercises go forward in the presence of the acting head of the State Department, Mr. Frank Polk, under which Walter Page did his work, and of former Secretary of the Treasury, Mr. William G. McAdoo who was the friend of Mr. Page, and his government colleague. I have the honor and the very great pleasure to present Secretary McAdoo. Responding to Doctor Alderman's 36 WALTER HINES PAGE 37 introduction Mr. McAdoo delivered the following address : It is a genuine privilege to join the friends of Walter Hines Page in this tribute to his memory, evidencing as it does the affection and respect in which his friends and his countrymen held him. It would be impossible for me to con- tribute anything to the eloquent ad- dresses which have been made by Doctor Alderman and by His Excellency, the British Ambassador, and I shall not attempt therefore to speak at any great length about our distinguished friend, but merely to recall a few incidents in his Hfe which are not known to the public. I had known Mr. Page somewhat casu- ally before the year 191 1, but in 1911 I became intimately acquainted with SS MEMORIAL MEETING him. We were brought together by a sort of mutual attraction — growing out of a community of ideas or identity of purpose. Doctor Alderman described Mr. Page very accurately when he said that he was essentially a democrat and that he was intelligently a radical. It was for those reasons no doubt that Mr. Page threw himself with such fervor into the effort to have nominated for the presidency of the United States, the man who represented not only the prin- ciples for which he stood and in which he believed with such ardor, but the ideals which Mr. Page so fervently cherished. And as I, myself, was very much interested in effectuating the same object, we found ourselves in complete sympathy with each other, and became earnest companions in an effort at political cooperation in a field which was WALTER HINES PAGE 39 entirely new to each of us, and which we entered with the daring and enthusiasm of the innocents. We used to meet about once a week at a small ofhce down tow^n to consider the best means of furthering the interests of our ideal can- didate for the presidency. As we pro- ceeded, I was struck with the incisive- ness of Air. Page's mind; with the deep and abiding faith he had in his country and in the principles of democracy; with the loyalty and devotion of his friendships and of the sincerity and depth of his feelings and convictions. We were associated together in the pre- liminary work which led up to the Balti- more Convention in 191 2, and we had the pleasure of meeting after that con- vention and of feUcitating each other not so much upon the work we had done — a work to which we hoped that we had contributed something — but 40 MEMORIAL MEETING upon the happy fruition of our great adventure, the nomination for the Pres- idency of Woodrow Wilson. I learned during that time to know him intimately and to appreciate him deeply. Then was formed the sincere and ardent friendship which has abided ever since; and when the time came to consider an Ambassador to the Court of St. James's, I found myself, wholly unexpectedly, occupying a Cabinet po- sition in Washington, where it became my privilege to discuss the appointment with the President and the Secretary of State and to suggest my friend, Walter Hines Page as the man who should be chosen for that great post. It was not anticipated at that time, of course, that such a calamity as the Great War would overtake the world, and yet we all realized how essential it was that a man should be chosen to rep- WALTER MINES PAGE 41 resent America at the Court of St. James's, who not only represented the ideals of democracy but who also had the intellectual force, the high purpose, and the patriotism which would enable him to uphold the best traditions of that great and honorable post — a post which had been filled by some of the most eminent men in American history, and it was with the greatest pleasure that I urged as the man best fitted, of all those with whom I was acquainted, Walter Hines Page, for that distin- guished honor. I remember that I feared, as I thought about it at the time, that his somewhat abrupt manner — due to the great sin- cerity and fervor of his views, which Doctor Alderman has so happily de- scribed as '^ explosive"- — might perhaps be a bit foreign to the ways of diplomacy, and yet, even at that time, I think it 42 MEMORI.\L MEETING was rather vaguely in the minds and consciousness of the people that the days of secret and circuitous diplomacy were on the wane and that the direct diplomacy, the open diplomacy, the diplomac}' of sincerity and of honesty and candor were about to be ushered in. As I reflected upon that, I could not but believe that the selection of Mr. Page for this great ofhce was singularly appropriate, and that it gave promise of an adventure in diplomacy which might perhaps produce wonderful re- sults in the progress of the world. It was not my good fortune to see much of him after he left for London. Those were busy days in Washington, even before the war broke out, and, after hostilities began, the occasional letters which I had from him grew less and less frequent, and I found myself less and less able to keep up the correspondence. WALTER HINES PAGE 43 Doctor Alderman has most happily and fittingly described the wonderful charm of Walter Hines Page's letters. I believe with him, that Mr. Page will be accorded, if his letters are ever pub- lished — as I hope they may be — the dis- tinction of having been one of the most scholarly and delightful corres- pondents of modern times. As the ^var progressed I detected in his letters a note of poignant feeling for the misery^ and suffering which the war had produced. It was the very natural expression of Mr. Page, because he had that warmth of heart, that broad humanity, that great love for his fellow men, which made him peculiarly sus- ceptible to human suffering. But never, in his letters, was there a note of com- plaint, no matter what the difficulties were. They were filled with an increas- ing fervor and reverence and a firm 44 MEMORIAL MEETING determination to meet the difficulties which confronted his country in the ex- tremely delicate situation which her po- sition as a great neutral made inevitable ; but always there was the expression of a hope that some day America would come into the war as a belligerent and join with the Allies in vindicating the principles of justice and liberty for which they were fighting. He lived, I am glad to say, to see the realization of his hopes. He lived to see the Allies victorious and to see his country crowned with glory ; and while I never had the pleasure of seeing him again, I knew the grateful emotions with which he viewed that wonderful consummation of all that he most hoped for. Walter Hines Page stood by his post with the fervor of true patriotism, stricken in health, and knowing, I am WALTER HINES PAGE 45 sure, that to continue in London prob- ably meant the last great sacrifice for him. He faced it, nevertheless, with the courage and determination of a true soldier; and he was a participant in, as well as a contributor to, the vic- tory which his country had such a noble part in winning. He has made a shining page in the history of America, and all Americans will do him honor. DR. LYMAN ABBOTT'S ADDRESS DR. LYMAN ABBOTT was intro- duced by Doctor Alderman, who presented him in the following words : It is fitting that these exercises should close with a brief address on the moral and social forces of these times by one who knew Walter Hines Page as a fel- low craftsman; who shared with him his leaning toward democracy and who spurred him on by his own example, in the interest of men and women every- where. I have pleasure in presenting Dr. Lyman Abbott, editor of The Outlook. 46 WALTER HINES PAGE 47 Doctor Abbott, in response, spoke as follows : The admirable addresses to which we have listened have come from members of the party of v^hich Mr. Page was a member. It is perhaps fitting that a word should be added to those tributes by one who has been all his life a demo- crat but never a member of the Demo- cratic party — a life-long Independent wdth Republican prejudices. I am glad to speak for those outside of all party relations, representing this common tes- timony to a great service by a great man. It is singular, is it not, that we find it so difficult to get the men we want for public service, and yet, we do not give to them the rewards for which we all of us are working. For most of us at least, work for some kind of reward — 48 MEMORIAL MEETING money — fame — the joy of working. And all three of these are denied to our public men. We pay them less than private enterprise pays them. The mo- ment a man rises to any high position, the newspapers criticize him, which is right — rob him of character, which is wrong. And as for the joy of working, our American Nation has adopted a policy of checks and balances which hampers and hinders the honest public servant and makes him feel that he is always subject to suspicion. And yet it is the glory of Democracy that, in spite of this, it finds noble men to serve it. For my part, I do not hesitate, looking over the history of the recent past, to put, on one side, the history of Europe and, on the other side, the history of our country during the same time; the his- tory of America does not suffer in the comparison. I am willing — are we not WALTER HINES PAGE 49 all of us willing — to put Abraham Lin- coln and Gladstone side by side; to put Chief Justice Marshall and Lord Mansfield side by side; and to put the ambassadors who have served us abroad in critical times by the side of the am- bassadors of any other country. Where shall we find names more worthy of the world's reverence than the names of Benjamin Franklin who served us in the Revolutionary period; John Bige- low and Charles Francis Adams who served us in the time of the Civil War; John Hay and Andrew D. White who served us in the time of the Spanish- American War; or Mr. Herrick and Walter Hines Page who served us in the time of the Great World War. Every now and then, I come across a man, sometimes in the spoken conversa- tion, sometimes in the printed page, who thinks ambassadors are rather 50 MEMORIAL MEETING ornamental appendages to the country; that they are no longer necessar}-; that they are not much needed. They dress well; they eat well; they give good food to other people ; and they are pleas- ant companions and sometimes useful to inexperienced, perplexed, or impecu- nious travelers. Do we realize what an ambassador really is? Do we realize what it means for us to have a true representative of America in a foreign country; what it means to have such a representative in England? Lord Reading, I am sure, will pardon me if I say that a great many English readers have gotten their notion of what an American is from the pictures in Punch; from the caricatures in Martin Chuzzlewit; from the pen portrait of the American, drawn by Kiphng; from the Yankee on the stage; and from the American travelers whom W.\LrER HINES PAGE 51 they have met sometimes in Oxford Street and sometimes in the cheaper boarding houses. Do we reaHze what it is to have a cultivated gentleman, a scholar, reverenced, as Lord Reading has told us Mr. Page was reverenced in England, holding himself in close re- straint, as Lord Reading has told us he did hold himself while he was repre- senting a neutral country; and who poured out his enthusiasm for liberty and justice when he had permission to express himself. Do we know what it is to have such a man standing for us in the country of our kinsfolk? The successful ambassador must have certain contradictory qualities. He must be a thorough-going American and yet he must be an InternationaHst. He must be an aristocrat, and yet a democrat; he must be a man of tact; and he must be a man of force. Walter 52 MEMORIAL MEETING Page was all of these six men in one. He was a native American — thoroughly American. Born in the South; edu- cated in Baltimore, midway between the South and the North; taking what I may call his post graduate course in journalism in the Middle West and in New England. He knew every part of America and understood it. America was in ever}^ drop of his blood and in every tingling nerve of his body. He was an American, fired with the enthu- siasm of the American spirit. And yet he was also an Internationalist. He was an American but not a provincial Amer- ican. Our ambassador must represent his own country abroad. And he must not only know the language, but the life of the people, that he may interpret America to the people. Very shortly after he went over, provincial Ameri- cans cried out with indignation against W.\LTER HINES PAGE 53 him because he was reported as saying that we were ruled by English ideas and led by English ideas. And yet, is it not true that the great fundamental ideas of justice and law and order on which the British Empire has been built, rule in America? I hope it is. And is it not true that the men who have fought the battles out of which our own liber- ties have grown, have fought them on English soil and so by the happy acci- dent of having been born before us, have been our leaders? He was both an aristocrat and a dem- ocrat! What it is to have a country governed by what we are apt to call the best citizens — by which we generally mean the worthiest, the most powerful, the highest bred or the best educated; what it is to have a country governed by those without any sympathy with or understanding for the plain people. 54 MEMORIAL MEETING Russia has shown us under the Czar; and what it is to have a country gov- erned by proletarians without any sym- pathy for the rights of the rich, the powerful, the intellectual, Russia is showing us under the Bolsheviki. God grant that we may learn the lesson and, in this country, reaUze that there can be no peace and no prosperity unless capital and labor work in unity and clasp hands in a common effort for a common welfare. Mr. Page was a Siamese twin. He was a democrat and an aristocrat. He beheved in the best; not in the best class, but in the best in any class and in the best in every man in every class. He was not a democrat that leveled down; he leveled up. He was a man of cul- ture, what culture President Alderman has already intimated to us. I have had a fairh^ large acquaintance with Wx\I.TER MINES PAGE SS cultured men — college graduates — I have known but two men that wrote their private memoranda in the Greek language. Mr. Page w^as one of them. All the culture of the past he was fa- mihar wdth; that splendid past which we are gradually forgetting, more is the pity. But with that culture, there w^ent a profound sympathy and a practical fellowship with the men of affairs. When he went into journaKsm, it was into TJie World^s Work. He was a world's man and he had a hearty sym- pathy with the workers of the world. He believed in the past; but he also believed in the future and in the prog- ress of the past into the future. It was characteristic of him to entitle one department in his review ^'The March of Events." He died for his country as truly as any soldier whose body lies under the 56 MEMORIAL MEETING sod of France. He laid down his life for his fellow men. Do you remember what John says: ^'Christ laid down His life for us and we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers." I do not know what his church was. I do not know whether he belonged to any church. But I do know he followed Christ to the uttermost, for he laid down his life for his fellow men. We have no war cross we can give him. We have no title we can give him. How shall we honor him? How but by following his example and by de- manding of our country that it honor the men who are continuing the work he did for us. This is the honor we desire to pay to him. This is the crown we desire to put upon his head: the crown of service, by continuing for our country by our lives, the spirit of his consecrated sacrifice.